I was talking to Bill Price (coach of the Saluki Swim team) about the new pool initiative the other day and he asked why I had written against it in my blog. I think we agree that a $6M price tag, with a water park, is a crazy amount of money that makes no sense in Carbondale.
Bill asked me why people thought there would be a racial problem at the new pool. I pointed to the Boys and Girl's Club in Carbondale (I'm a big financial supporter), it is all black. Those kids need the club more and also they drive all the white kids out. There is a really good chance that kind of racial problems will occur at the pool too.
The great thing about talking to a real professional and knowledgeable person is you start getting educated on how things will really work. Bill started talking about what programs would grow and thrive if there was an outdoor pool in Carbondale. Because Bill is less wordy then I am, I'll enhance what he said with some logical assumptions.
The kinds of programs that would go on in a outdoor pool in Carbondale are a Summer swim team, water aerobics, and master's swim team. I'm sure there are more uses, but can't come up with them right now. If you have ever examined a public swimming pool's schedule, the "free swim" time is very, very small. The mental image from Caddy Shack and the caddies going to the pool just isn't allowed much, because there are adults running programs in the pool most all the time.
I'm still very much against a $6M pool and a $250k to $500k operational loss every year. I don't like the Carbondale Park District (or their slag name, the Carbondale Pork District), they run their other assets poorly. But, an outdoor pool would allow Carbondale a venue for many positive workout and sport opportunities. If the organizers weren't so darn stupid about the message they are sending to the public and were sensitive about the tax payer's concerns (price and how to handle the racial problems that are going to come with it), an outdoor pool might get built.
You are allowed to point out there are racial problems in Carbondale aren't you?
Your comments are always welcome.